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Full text of "The Bishop of Oxford's charge to the clergy of his diocese, at his primary visitation in July, 1716"

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THE 
Bilhop of OXFORD^ 

CHARGE 

T 6 T H E 

CLERGY 

O F H I S 

DIOCESE, 



A T H I S 



^tmarp Btfttation 

In July 17^, 



LONDON: 

Printed by J. Htptinflall, forGEORGE Mortlock, 
at the Ph<znix in St. 'Paul's Church-yard. 1 7 1 6. 



"'i i\ 



( I ) 





My Reverend and Dear Brethren, 

I N C E ic hath pleas' d the Di- 
vine Providence, which often 
makes ufe of the Meaneft Inftru- 
ments, to call Me, however Un- 
worthy, to this Publick Station 
in the Church, I have embrac'd 
this firft Opportunity, which 
my necelTary Attendance on Parliament and Con- 
vocation would allow me, of meeting my Clergy. 

And here in the firft place I muft not omit to 
Congratulate with You on the Freedom we now 
enjoy of coming together in this Open, Peaceable 
and Solemn Manner, after the late mod Horrid 
and Unnatural Rebellion 5 which, had it fucceeded 
according to the Wifhes of our Enemies, in ad- 
vancing to the Throne of thefe Kingdoms a Perfon 
train'd up from his Infancy in all the Superftitions 
of Popery, together with the Maxims of Tyranny 
and Arbitrary Power, could fcarce otherwise have 
A 2 ended, 



(4) 

ended, without the immediate and wonderful Inter- 
pofition of Providence, than in the utter Extirpation 
of our Religious and Civil Liberties j and would 
moft probably in a very fhort Time have prov'd 
Fatal to the whole Proteftant Intereft, of which the 
Church of England, under the Divine Favour and 
Protection, hath ever fince our Happy Reformation 
been the chief Support and Bulwark. 

In return for this great- BlefTing, let it be our con- 
stant Study and Endeavour to make fuch a Religi- 
ous Improvement thereof as our Duty to God re- 
quires, and all good Men juftly expect j by adorn- 
ing wich fuitable Lives and Conventions, that Holy 
Religion which hath been thus wonderfully preferv'd, 
and engaging to the like Behaviour, as far assies in 
our Power, all thofe, over whom the Holy Ghofl hath 
made us OVerfeen. This is the beft and only Method, 
as well to fecure the Profperity of that Pure and 
Apoftolical Church whereof we are Members, as to 
advance the Efteem and Dignity of our own Office 
and Character, and to fit us for the rendering ro 
our Great Mafter a fatisfactory Account of that 
weighty Trufl: which he hath committed to us. 

Others may defend our Native Country by their 
Military Conduct and Achievements, guide and 
direct it by their Counfels, improve its Trade, in- 
creafe its Wealth, and by various other Arts and 
Methods contribute in their feveral Stations to its 
outward Peace and Profperity * but to inftill the 

Prin- 



( 5 > 
Principles of true Religion into. Me. ns Minds> to re- 
form their vicious Habits, and to promote the unU 
verfal practice of Piety and Virtue, this, as 'tis our 
peculiar Province, fo, if faithfully difcharged, will 
be our chief Happiriefy and Glory. So far is this, 
both for its Dignity and Importance, fupefiour to 
the highefl: Truft$ and Employments of any other 
kind,, as the Soul is ^raore excellent than the Body, 
and our Eternal Welfare of more Gonfequence than 
any Temporal hitereft or Advantage; and, though 
it chiefly aims .at the bettering our Spiritual and Fu- 
W^rSyia^W>l*:ft5':tftflucnce : reacheth alfo to the 
.pKfentjfeteHo^r^WOr^ it being hence, that Ser- 
Vantfc Jfcarn to l bc more Faithful, | Children more 
Obedjent, Subjects more Loyal,, Magiftrates more 
"lY J giJ*flE.f0r z kp common Good of their People, and 
•fajl £>cher Orders of Men to make a Confcience of 
their refpe&ive Duties to God and one another 5 
and that by this Means any Nation or Community 
is entituled to the Divine Favour and Protection. 

This is the great and good Work, to which the 
Prpvidence of God hath call'd us, to which the Au- 
thority -.of the Church hath appointed us, and to 
which,: in a mod folemn and publick Manner we 
have all confecrated our felves. Let, us therefore 
ierioufly, faithfully, and conftantly attend it; let it 
be both our Bufinefs and Diverfion, and laying 
afide all other Studies and Employments, let us, 
as it deferves, and as we have openly vow'd in the 

Fa, 

f 



( 6 ) 

Face of the Church, give up our felves wholly to 
this one Thing. Ealle it were to enlarge, and 'tis 
rather difficult to forbear enlarging, on a Subject fo 
ufeful, fo copious, fo noble : But I fpeak to thofe, 
who, 'tis to be hbp'd, have long fince throughly 
weigh'd and confider'd, and do daily not only con- 
fider, but put in practice thefe Things \ and if any 
amongft us fhould want to be put in mind of their 
Duty in this refpect (and who is there fo watchful, 
or fo perfect, as never to need a Rembrancer >) They 
may foon have recourfe to the Excellent Liturgy of 
our Church, where the feveral Duties incumbent on 
the Sacerdotal Office are fo fully 'fet form, and fo pa- 
thetically prefs'd and recommended, that 'tis hard- 
ly poffible to exprefs more in fo fhort a compafs : 
infomuch that whoever at convenient diftances of 
Time, if it were but at the four ftated feafons of 
every Year, (hall allow himfelf leafure attentively 
to read over the Offices of Ordination, and fliall 
then carefully imprint upon his Memory the weighty 
and earneft Exhortations there directed to be given, 
and ferioufly recoiled: the full Extent and DeiTgn of 
of the folemn Profeflions and Promifes he once made 
to God and the Church, cannot fail of having his 
Mind fufficiently furnifh'd, as well with juft Notions 
of his paftoral Duty, as with proper Motives and 
Inducements to the faithful and conftant difcharge 
of it. 

IwiOi 



( ? } 

r widi I could fay, and happy were it for this 
Church and Nation, if it could truly be laid, that 
fuch is the prefent ftate of our Affairs, as doth not 
require the utmoft Vigilance, and even more than 
ordinary Care and Application of a diligent, pious 
and prudent Clergy. But it was long fince foretold, 
that Herefies would arife, and that Offences muft 
come ; and the Event hath fully anfwer'd this Pre- 
diction • there having never been any Age or Part 
of the Chriftian Church, which cpuld boaft of fo 
much Purity or Perfection, as to be for any conilde- 
rable time wholly free from Unworthy and Falfe 
Members, who did either by their unfound Doctrines 
corrupt and undermine, or by their flagicious Lives 
prophane and difhonour that Holy Faith which we 
profefs. Even in the Sacred College of Apoftles 
one was found, who for a little fordid Gain betray *d 
the Lord and Saviour of all the World. In the Age 
immediately following, which was one of the beft 
the World ever faw, St. John writing to the Seven 
Jfian Churches in the Name and by the fpecial Di- 
rection of Chrift, blames one of them for having 
left her fir ft LoVe, another for having in her Com- 
munion thofe that held the Dottrine of the Nicolaitans, 
a third for Offering Jezebel, who call'd herfelf a Pro- 
phetefs, to /educe the Chriftiam to commit Fornicationy 
and to eat Tlnngs facriftced to Idols ; a fourth for being 
lukewarm, wretched and miferabk, and poor, and blind, 
and naked j and in fhort,- fcar.ee leaves any one of 

them, ' 



( 8 ) 

chem, except that of Smyrna, without fome remark- 
able and fevexe Reprehendon. About this time 
alfo broke forth' the deteftable and infamous Se&s 
of the Gnoftick Herefy, of whofe abfurd and wic- 
ked Principles and Practices even the better fort of 
Heathens would have been afliam'd. And if in 
thofe early Times, when Men took not upon them 
the Prorefllon of our Holy Religion to comply with 
any prevailing. Fafhion, or on the profpecl: of Tem- 
poral Advantage, but to be a Chriftian was a thing 
of the utmoft Reproach, Difficulty and Hazard, to 
be a Minifter of the Gofpel was to (land in the 
Front or Heat of the Battle, and to be a Bifhop was 
to be both by Jews and Gentiles, that is, by all the 
World, marked out for inevitable Deftruction 5 if 
even in thefe Days Vice and Corruption were fo 
prevalent $ we cannot wonder to hear, that after- 
wards the (fate of Religion in this refpecl: became far 
worfe when Men were invited and allured to de- 
clare themfelves Chriftians, as well by great Civil 
Rewards and Encouragements, as by the perfua- 
five Examples of the Roman Emperors themfelves. 
After this, the great Inundations of favage people, 
which overturn d the whole ftate of the Weftern 
Empire, introduc'd Ignorance and Barbarifm, the 
Natural Confequence whereof were Superftition and 
Idolatry, which in thefe parts of the World almoft 
every where reign' d till the Reformation, whereby 
they were happily difpell'd. And had we faithfully 

improved 



( 9 ) 
improv'd thofe great Advantages, which Divine 
Providence did then, and hath ever fince put into 
our Hands, every one among us } from the lead to 
the greateft, would have been, in the Prophet's 
Phrafe, taught of God y perfectly inftructed and ae- 
complifh'd in all things needful for good Chriftians 
either to know or pra&ife $ which would have ren- 
der' d all the Duties of our Minifterial Vocation, as 
with refpect to thofe committed to our Care ex- 
tremely fuccefsful, fo to our felves mod: eafie and 
pleafant. But, alas, 'tis our Misfortune, whilft 
fome led away by ftrong and inveterate Prejudices 
tenaciouily adher'd to their ancient flate of Blind- 
nefs and Superftition, and others through Atheifm 
and Irreligion, or Sloth and Inadvertency difregar- 
ded the Light ofTer'd to them ; whilft too many 
fcarce apply'd it to any other life than to maintain 
unprofitable Controverfies, to promote Divifions, 
and to draw Parties afrer them, and perhaps the 
greateft Number by their vicious Lives rendered 
themfelves wholly uncapable of receiving any true 
Benefit from it, that the Event prov'd far otherwife. 
I would not be thought, and far be it from me to 
compare either our Virtues or our Vices with thofe 
of the Members of that corrupt Church, from which 
by the particular Blefling of God we have been fo 
well and wifely Reform'd : Whatever our Fault be, 
which indeed are too many and too publick, it is 
well known, and might eafily be prov'd, were it 
B not „ 



( to ) 

not coo notorious to be deny'd, that fome of the 
worft of them have been acted and connived at, and 
even countenanced and encourag'd by many who 
have fill'd the higheft and moft Sacred Places in 
that Communion. But, leaving thefe Men to (land 
or fall to their own Matter, it is a thing highly to 
be lamented, and which is generally lamented by 
good Men, that notwithstanding the Light of the 
Gofpel, hath been in every part of this our Native 
Country fo clearly and fully difplay'd, its Precepts 
inforc'd with fuch perfuafive and moving Eloquence, 
and its Doctrines demonftrated even to the meaneft 
Capacities with fo much Strength and Perfpicuity, 
as hardly any Age or Nation can parallel, yet Vice 
and Prophanenefs, Scepticifm and Irreligion, inftead 
of lofing their Ground, or being almoft entirely 
rooted out and extinguifh'd, as might juftly have 
been expected, have on the contrary, to the great 
Difhonour of God and Religion, increas'd and ga- 
ther* d ftrength, and are become far more infolent 
and barefac'd than formerly. I could heartily wifh 
that thefe were only the Complaints of Melan- 
choly and Contemplative Men, who are apt to pais 
hard Cenfures upon their own Times, and com- 
monly judge of the ftate of the World rather by 
foine imaginary, and perhaps impracticable Schemes 
of their own, than by any thing which hath really 
therein happen' d : And I doubt not, but that, as 
in the Days of Eltas> when Idolatry had fo far over- 

fpread 



( 11 ) 

fpread the Kingdom of 1/rael, that the Prophet 
look'd upon himfelf to be the only perfon who re- 
main' d of all the Worfliippers of God, fo now alfo, 
and much more it would appear upon due Enquiry, 
that there are many truly pious and faithful Mem- 
bers of this Church, who thro' the Grace of God 
have all along been preferv'd from the prevailing 
and epidemical Vices of the Age : yet I am afraid, 
that the more we look abroad, the greater caufe we 
fhall find to complain, of the general Neglect both 
of the publick and private Duties of Religion in 
fome, of the great Depravation of Moral as well 
as Religious Principles in others, ofamanifefi: In- 
difference or Lukewarmnefs to every thing beyond 
the prefent Life in moft, and in too many of the 
mod fhamerul Contempt of all things Sacred, even 
of thofe mod: Solemn Oaths and Obligations, which 
in all Ages and Countries have been held inviolable. 
By whom or through what means thefe Tares 
came to be fount among us, is not very eafie, and 
perhaps not material, to determine. Some derive 
them from the long Rebellion of the laft Age. 
The feign'd Shews and Pretences of fome Men at 
that time to more than ordinary Piety and Devotion, 
under which the worft Defigns were often cloak'd 
and carried on, are thought to have bred in others 
an Averilon to all outward appearances of Religion, 
and at length to have ended in Prophanenefs, Scep- 
ticifm, and downright Infidelity. And as from 
B 2 one 



( >* ) 

one Extreme Men often run into another, (o it hath 
been obferv'd, that the Superftition and Hypocrifie 
of one Age are commonly follow'd by Atheifm 
and Irreligion in the next. Some again are of 
Opinion, that if after the Happy Reftoration of our 
Ancient' Government in Church and State, due 
Meafures for the Suppreflion of Vice, and for the 
Encouragement of True Religion and Virtue had 
been ferioufly perfued, thefe Evils might have been, 
if not wholly prevented and remedy'd, at lean; very 
much leiTen'd and abated j and therefore refer to 
this account the licentious and diforderly way of 
Living, to fpeak nothing more fevere of it, w hich 
from great Examples in the Reign immediately fol- 
lowing dirTus'd it felf, as 'tis common and almoft 
natural for ill Habits and Cuftoms to do, through 
all inferiour Ranks and Degrees of Men amongft 
us. Others date the more than ordinary increafe 
of Irreligion from the late Happy Revolution, and 
it muft be own'd, that in great Mutations of Pub- 
lick Affairs Men of Heterodox Principles common- 
ly appear more open and undifguis'd, than in quiet 
and fettled Times ; hoping perhaps that the preva- 
lent Humour of changing may furnifh a favourable 
Opportunity to eftablifh their new Opinions, or at 
leaft that in the publick Hurry and Confufion they 
themfelves fhall efcape with Connivance and Impu- 
nity. Some of our Hiftorians complain of the 
growth of Scepticifm and Prophaneneis about the 

time 



( '3 >. 

time of the Reformation : Neither is it flrange, that 
the obliging Men under the fevereft Penalties to a 
fort of Half-Popery in one Reign, to be compleac. 
Proteftants in the next, to refume all their former 
Superftitions in the third, and in the fourth to be 
Proteftants again, together with the fhameful Com- 
pliances of too many with all thefe Alterations, and 
this in the Compafs of a few Years, unfetded in 
many, and in others almoft quite erfac'd'the Prin- 
ciples of Religion and Virtue. Whether fomething 
of the fame kind, tho' in a lefs degree, did not 
happen at the Revolution, others, who are more 
converfant in the Tranfa&ions of that and the 
Times immediately preceding may better judge. 
This feems to be on all hands confefs'd by fober 
2nd confederate Men, that there is fcarce any thing 
which hath contributed more to the Corruption 
both of Mens Morals and Principles, than our un- 
fortunate Diviiion into Parriej, which feem to have 
fb far prevail'd, as, even to deftroy the diftinction 
of Virtue and Vice, Religion and Prophanenefs 5 
infomuch that in order to be reputed one of the befl 
or worft Men in the World, there needs fcarce any 
o:her Accomplifhmenr than with intemperate Zeal 
to engage on one fide, and againft ano.her. Jt is 
not my defign, and moft unfeafonable would it be,. 
to reflect on one Party more than another ; in this 
Gafe efpecially, wherein no Party is wholly ^ree 
from Blame j and at this Time, when our common 

Intereft 



( 14 ) 

Intereft, as well as our Duty calls upon us to lay 
allele thofe opprobrious and unchriftian Names of 
Diftinction, which have fo long kept us at variance, 
and with united Force to oppole the declared Ene- 
mies both of our Country and our Religion. The 
chief End of all that hitherto hath been faid, is to 
fhew the great Neceffity there is for every one of 
us to employ his conftant and utmoft Diligence in 
the difcharge of that high and weighty Truft 3 to 
which Divine Providence hath call'd Us. 

In order to promote the Succefs of our faithful 
Endeavours, many excellent Rules have been pre- 
fcrib'd for the due performance of every part of 
the Sacerdotal Office, which, I am in good hopes, 
itvis needlefs in this Audience to repeat. One thing, 
however, which feems to me to deferve in a parti- 
cular manner to be recommended, is habitual and 
conftant Serioufnefs as well in our common Con- 
verfation, as in the Duties of Religion. I do not 
hereby underftand Morofenefs, or any unbecoming 
feverity of Behaviour, which inftead of enaging 
Men to the Love of Religion, is rather apt to de- 
rer them from it j but my Meaning is, that the 
moil effectual Method to recommend the practice 
of Piety and Virtue to others, is to make it appear 
from the whole courfe of our Lives, that they have 
taken deep Root in our own Breafts. In vain fhall 
that Man endeavour to perfuade others co the great 
Duties, for inftance, of Patience and Refignation, 

Mor- 



( «* 5 

Mortification and Self-denial, Meeknefs and For- 
giving of Injuries, who is known to live in the 
Contempt or Neglect of thcfe Graces, to be ira? 
patient and difcontented, fenfual and intemperate, 
fiery and revengeful. The well-known Rule, Si vis 
me fere, dolendum eft primum ipfi tibi, holds as well 
in this as in moft other Cafes. In reading the daily 
Prayers of the Church, if any of us, inftead of 
pronouncing them in the manner which the Nature 
of this Duty requires, that is, gravely, feriouily and 
reverently, mould make it his conftant practice to 
hurry them over without any Concern or Attention, 
and like a Task of which he deiires to rid himfelf 
as foon as po/Tible • this, inftead of exciting Devo- 
tion in thole that hear him, would rather incline 
them to RemilTnefs and Coldnefs, to Irrdigion 
and Atheifm. The fame may be apply'd to any- 
other Act of our Sacred Function. 

As for our Preaching, He that with moft Sim- 
plicity and Plainnefs fhall enforce the Motives, and 
expound the Doctrines and Precepts contain d in 
the Holy Scriptures, unlefs I am very much mifta- 
ken, will beft anfwer all the Ends of this Duty. 
For thefe Books being deflgn'd for the means of 
Salvation to Men of all Orders and Conditions, 
were adapted by the Divine Spirit, under whofe 
Sacred Influence they were firft written, to all Tem- 
pers and Capacities j whereas Difcourfes, which 
chiefly coniift of Humane Reafonings, or Deducts 



( 16 ) 

oris from Principles meerly natural, whatever good 
Influence they may have on fome kw, who have 
improv'd their Minds by Study and Meditation, 
are feldom well underftood or attended to by thofe, 
who make a great Majority in moll: -Congregations. 
Befide that Arguments from the Decency, Con- 
venience, or Ficnefs of things are far infer iour in 
Weight and Force to thofe propounded by Divine 
Revelation;, and therefore Philofophy, when it 
flourifli'd moll: in Greece and ac Sjwwe, feems to 
have been of little ufe to the generality of Men. 
It was the hearing of Judgment to come, which caus'd 
FeltXy the corrupt Judge, to tremble. Never were 
any Motives fo admirably fuited to operate at all 
times on the Hopes and Fears of Mankind, as 
Heaven and Hell 5 and the utmoft Demonstration 
which any matter of Fact can poffibly receive, is 
this That God hath fpoken it. I would not be 
underftood, and highly abfurd it would be, efpe- 
cially in the Neighbourhood of one of the mod 
eminent Nurfcries of Learning in the World, to 
decry the Ufe of Reafon and Philofophy, two of 
the greateft Beffings and nobleft Gifts that Provi- 
dence hath beftow'd on Mankind 5 but the Wile 
King hath taught us, that every thing hath its pro- 
per Seafon. All I defire under this Head, is, that 
in Matters of Religion, and efpecially in our popu- 
lar Difcourfes, due Preference be allow'd to Reve- 
lation ; and whoever fhall neglect to give the Holy 

Scriptures 



( 17 ) 

Scriptures their juft Weight and Authority, will 
loon find xhe Authority of his own Exhortations 
very much lelTen'd and impair'd. 

I am afraid that our Sermons, and in general, 
all continued and long Difcourfes, many times fail 
of their defir'd Succefs ? and are too ofcen not very 
well underflood by many of thofe who come to 
hear us, through the want of their having been early 
and fufficiently inftructed in the Principles of Reli- 
gion • and therefore ic feems to be no inconfiderable 
part of our Paftoral Office faithfully and conftantly 
to Catechize the Youth under our Care 5 whereby 
is underftood not only the teaching them to anfwer 
readily to certain Queftions, which unlefs it be far- 
ther improved, is a thing of no great Ufe or Ad- 
vantage, but the inftilling into their Minds, as far 
as they are capable of receiving them, true Notions 
of the Doctrines and Duties contained in theCate- 
chifm, together with the flricl: and indifpenfable 
Obligation incumbent on all of us to believe the 
one and pra&ife the other, and thus training them 
up in the ways of Piety and Virtue. Often it hap- 
pens, that the benefit of thefe Catechetical Inftrucii- 
ons exrends it felf to Men of riper Years, though 
perhaps unwilling and afham'd to confefs their Ig- 
norance ; and will, however, through the Grace 
of God aiTifting, engage the rifing Generation to 
blefs our Memories. 

C One 



( »« ) 

One thing, which, in my Opinion, ought to be 
rnoft frequently recommended, and mod earneftly 
prefs'd on Mens Confciences, is the daily Exercife 
of Religious Duties in private Families: which, 
fhoukl it once generally obtain, as without all dif- 
pute it ought every where to do, would foon of it 
felf, and without any other afliftance, except the 
Divine Bleffing, put a ftop to that Deluge of Pro- 
phanenefs and Irreligion, which hath broken in upon 
us. And one would think there could be no need 
of Arguments to perfuade thofe, who every day fin 
againft God, daily to confefs and ask Pardon for 
their Sins ; or thofe, who always fubfifl: by his Fa- 
vour, to return their Tribute of Praife and Thankf- 
giving ; or thofe, whofe future Hopes, both in this 
Life and the next, entirely depend upon his Bounty, 
to implore his Ble/Tmg and Protection. 1 would- 
not be thought either to blame, or to caft any fuf- 
picion of Blame upon any of my Brethren of the 
Clergy, who befide their general Obligation both as 
Chriftians and as Clergymen, are farther requir'd 
by one of the Rubricks prefix' d before our excel- 
lent Liturgy, to fay daily the Morning and Evening- 
Trayer either TnVately or Openly, and therefore can- 
not be fuppos'd unmindful of their Duty in this re- 
fpect : but if by the pious Labours and Example 
of the Clergy this Practice was once generally imro- 
duc'd into other Families, the happy Fruits of it 
would foon appear by the manifcft increafe of Re- 
ligion 



( 19 ) 

ligion and good Manners in all parts of the Nation. 
This farther remains, which the prefent ftate of our 
Affairs will not permit me to pafs over in Silence, 
Vi%. That we apply our utmoft Diligence co pro- 
mote Union and Concord, and to allay thofe vio- 
lent Heats and Animolicies, which, as they gave 
Rife to the late Rebellion, fo, unlefs they be feafo- 
nably prevented, may at one time or another, and 
perhaps when we are leaft apprehenfive of any (uch 
fatal Confecjuence, involve this. Church and Nation, 
like thofe of the Jews under Vefpafian, in extreme 
Mifery and Ruin. Our Bleffed Saviour hath de- 
clar'd, that whoever lufleth after a Woman, is an Adul- 
terer in the fight of God 3 and St. John, that whoever 
batetb bis Brother, is a Murderer : wich the fame truth, 
and on the fame account, it may be affirm'd, that 
whoever fhall foment Divifions, raife Difcontcnts 
and Jealoufies, fpread evil Reports of the Govern- 
ment, or fhall Abett and Encourage others who are 
guilty of thefe or the like practices, muft partake 
of the Sin of Rebellion $ and the rather, becaufe 'tis 
not in any Man's Power to command, or fct 
Bounds to thefe Diforders, which from inconfide- 
rable Beginnings have often produc'd fuch unexpe- 
cted and Tragical ErTe&s, as even thofe Men, from 
whofe unhappy Contrivance and Management they 
took their firft Rife, utterly decelted and abhorr'd : 
Whence King Solomon compares the beginning of 
Strife to the letting out of Water , which may eafily 
C 2 be 



be confin'd within its Banks, but thcfe being once 
broken down, with irrefiftable Violence overturns 
all before it. The Divine Providence hath been 
pleas'd to blefs His Majefty's Arms and Counfels 
with all the Succefs we could dcfire 5 but lmpoflible 
it will be for us to enjoy the Advantages of Peace 
in their full Extent, till the prefent Ferments, are 
allay 'd, and Mens Minds more difpos'd to Qui- 
etnefs and Unanimity, than hitherto they feem ' to 
have been : 'and therefore our Duty, as AmbafTa^ 
dors from the King of Peace, the publick Voice of 
our Native Country, and the Expectation of God 
and all good Men call upon us ferioufly to apply 
ourfelves to the Cure of thefe Diftempers ; and it 
having long been accounted the Glory of the 
Church of England, that her Sons of the Clergy 
have always maintain'd and defended that inviola- 
ble Submiffion which is due from all Subjects to 
the Supreme Powers, fo fhall our Actions ap- 
pear to be confiftent with our Doctrine, if the Re- 
bellion being now through the Divine Affiftance 
happily ended, all the Seeds of future Difturbances 
be through our Means, and, as far as in us lies, 
eradicated from the Minds of the People. Thus to 
behave ourfelves, our Bleffed Mafter and hfs'Apo- 
ftles, and the Chriftians of the next Ages after them, 
have constantly taught us both by their Doctrine 
and Example, even though cruel Torments and 
Perfecution fhould be the beft Reward we could 

expect 



( 21 ) 

expect in this Life for our Obedience and Loyalty. 
What Zeal ought we then to exprefs for the Service 
of a Prince, whofc Interefts are not only perfectly 
united, but entirely the fame, with our own j who 
is a conftant Member of our Communion, who 
hath folemnly promis'd, and doth on all proper 
Occafions repeat and confirm this Promife, to pro- 
tect us in the Enjoyment both of our Religious 
and Civil Liberties • and hath not only obferv'd it 
with refpect to us of the Clergy in common with 
the reft of his Subjects, but hath diftinguifh'd Us 
by feveral peculiar and very great Marks of his 
Affection and Favour ? He hath lately purchas'd one 
of the larger! and beft furnifli'd Libraries that ever 
was poflefs'd by any private Perfon, and plac'd it 
in one of our two Univerfities, where it was mod: 
wanted 5 and in the firft Year of His Reign, in 
Concurrence with the Parliament, He eftablifh'd a 
fure Fund for the railing of fuch a Sum towards the 
Maintenance of lome of the Clergy, as perhaps, ex- 
cept the Royal Bounty of our Late Gracious Sove- 
reign, is the greateft Gift that ever was at one time 
in any Age beftow'd for this life. 

Thus I have endeavour' d with all the Brevity 
"Which the Subject would permit, to remind. You 
and M) felf of lome of thofe Duties, which feem'd 
to me particularly incumbent on Us at this feafon. 
Several other things might be added, but having 
already too far trefpafs'd on your Patience, 1 fhall 

detain 



( 21 ) 

detain you no longer, than till I have acquainted you, 
that, as it will be a fingular Delight and Satif- 
faction to Me to be ferviceable to any of my 
Clergy, either in the Execution of their Ministerial 
Office, or the Maintenance of their juft Rights and 
Authority, which I fluli always account as a chief 
Branch of my own. fo, whatever Information, 
Advice, or Affiftance any of you (nail impart in re- 
lation to my Duty, (hall be thankfully accepted ; 
it being my Defire, that in this Diocefe all things 
may be carried on with your Confent and Ap- 
• probation. 

"Now the God of Peace, that brought again from 
the Dead our Lord Jefus, that great Shepherd of 
the Sheep, through the (Blood of the everlafting 
Covenant^ make you perfetl in every good Work 
to do his Will, working in you that which is well- 
pleafing in his fight, through Jefus Chrifl, to 
whom be Glory jor eVer and ever. Amen. 



F 1 N 1 S. 



BOOI^S Printed for George Mortlock at the 
Phoenix in St, Paul'* Churcb-Yard. 

CLementis Alexandrini Opera, qua? Extant Recognita 
Scllluftrata. Per Joannem Potterum Epifcopum Oxon. 

Bi(hop Stillingfleets Works in 6 Vols. Folio. 

Origwes Sacr£ : Or, A Rational Account of the 

Grounds of the Chriftian Faith, as to the Truth and 
Divine Authority of the Scriptures, and the Matters there- 
in contained. 

Fifty Sermons preach'd on feveral Occafions. 

A Rational Account of the Grounds of the 

Protectant Religion : Being a Vindication of the Lord 
Archbilhop of Canterbury* Relation of a Conference 
from the pretended Anfwer by T. C. wherein the True 
Grounds of Faith are Cleared, and the Falfe Difcovered: 
The Church of England Vindicated from Schifm, and the 
moft important particular Controverfies between us and 
the Church of Rtme thoroughly Examined. 

Idolatry of the Church of Rome. 

Dodtrine of Chrift's Satisfaction : Or, The 

True Reafons of his Sufferings. 

Horne.k's Beft Exercife, with Prayers fuitable to each 
Exercife. 

Delight and Judgment. 

The New- Years- Gift, Compleat. In Six Parts. With 
Devotions for the Sacrament, &c. 

The Whole Art of Husbandry : Or, The Way of Ma- 
naging and Improving of Land. Being a full Collection 
of what hath been written either by Ancient or Modern 
Authors, with many Additions, New Experiments and 
Improvements not treated of by others. Alfo an Account 
of the particular Sorts of Husbandry ufed in feveral 
Counties, with Propofals for its farther Improvement. 
By J. Mortimer, Efq, Fellow of the Royal Society. In 
Two Vols. 8vo. 



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